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Zane is right on the money. "Hate speech" is in the eye of the beholder -- that's why it has no standing at all in the US tradition of free speech. It's extremely disappointing to see REI, which stands up for freedom in all its various, conflicting, vibrant ways, to make this sullen stance against free expression. And yes, unless we defend unpopular and even repellent views, our own views are not safe. I call on REI to support free expression among the many, various, free adults who are proud to call themselves members.
Kudos to REI for not shutting down this conversation. I encountered a rather one sided post on Backpackinglight from the owners that seemed to invite conversation only to immediately censor dissenting opinions and close the thread to comments. No one person or group has a monopoly on how to fix the world and all its problem. Good intentions often lead to worse conditions. Most of us don't have time to research large issues deeply and default to opinions that fit our narrative. The ones that do are still often influenced my their own bias and still disagree amongst each other. I certainly don't want a to have to hear someone talk about their racial superiority who isn't open to discussion, but I also don't want there to be an ever expanding definition of what racist speech is and what it's ok to do to people who speak it.
Absolutely!! Who decides? This is a slippery slope that REI should not be supporting. The arrogance off thinking any one viewpoint is the o lu acceptable viewpoint plants the seeds of totalitarianism.
I applaud REI for standing up for what is right. Free Speech comes with responsibility, common sense, and a reverence for this most important of our rights as Americans. Free Speech is NOT the right to slander, it is NOT the right to post blatantly false information to sway political opinion, it is NOT the right to spread flagrant propaganda on the COVID-19 pandemic that puts others peoples' lives in danger, and it is NOT the right to incite violence as has been done by those at the highest levels of our government and society. Freedom of Speech is NOT the right to say anything you want, anytime that you want, anywhere that you want. REI is a company and they can choose to act how they want, Facebook is a company and can choose to act how they like, this is FREE SPEECH, and you as a private citizen do not have the right to impose your own interests on companies that are responsible to their investors, shareholders, client, and consumers. If you, or anyone else, want to spread lies, propaganda, incite violence, or slander others then do so on your own platform or stand on your own soapbox on the local street corner. REI does NOT have the obligation to act in amanner contrary to their own Values and Vision...
I go out to Nature to turn off all the politics, all the news and all the bumper stickers. I was disheartened to see REI jumping into the political arena involving Facebook. I don't know what the issue is and I don't care, whether you are blue or red or black or brown or white... it doesn't matter. I will no longer support REI if it goes down this road. You have made your choice and now I have made mine.
It is comical to see those who disdain for REI as it opts out of support for Facebook by saying that REI is denying free speech, and that REI is favoring censorship - REI is decrying the censorship that Facebook is doing.
Our Founding Documents prevents The Government from challenging free speech -
Our Founding Documents stop the government from abridging free speech.Not us - we are free to, just as REI is free to, make judgements about others' speech - the government is not able to censor. Facebook is free to censor; we, and REI, are free to censor censorship.
REI is among The Protected class, just as you and I are in the group that is protected from government censorship.
REI can freely support or object to whatever it wants, free from government interference.
REI is not the government, it is a free entity in the community, free to do what it wishes -
Many of us, sadly, just do not see that REI is a member of the community, it is not the government - REI is protected in doing what it chooses, just as you and I are free to do so.
Just as some have decided to condemn REI for standing for its beliefs.
Facebook is censoring - as such Facebook is in the wrong - calling out Facebook for its wrong-headed action is what freedom is about.
Just as you may stop supporting REI, REI is allowed to stop supporting the censorship that is Facebook.
It is THE American Way.
Confusing that Facebook does have the right to free speech, with the fact that government does not have the right to censor free speech, is just one of the sillinesses that have been foisted on The American Public is recent years. It is profoundly sad that many of us by into this manufactured, contrived, ignorant and wrong-headed division that has been made out of whole cloth, in order to divide the nation, and to provide false choices, beneficial only to those who have put forth these incorrect readings of The Constitution.